The Super Eagles did all they could to contain a very much determined South Africa side and won 2-1 to progress to the semifinals of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).
It was a solid performance from the Super Eagles who controlled the game despite having less of the ball.
This is how Super Eagles players rated in the game.
Daniel Akpeyi (Goalkeeper)
Didn’t have much to do all game as the Super Eagles contained South Africa but failed to read the situation well and stop Bongani Zungi’s header for South Africa’s equaliser.
Chidozie Awaziem (Right-back)
The more Awaziem plays as a right back for the Super Eagles at AFCON 2019, the better he has been. He was solid on the right side of the defence for the Super Eagles. With no support from Samuel Chukwueze who was in front of him, Aaziem kept his line well.
William Troost-Ekong (Central defence)
A very fantastic performance from Troost-Ekong who was a rock in defence. He chased everything around the Super Eagles area and also read the game very well. Attacked the ball in the final minutes and got Nigeria the winning goal.
Kenneth Omeruo (Central defence)
Was also solid in central defence. Was never rattled by the pace of the South Africans. He stayed calm all through the game and defended solidly.
Jamilu Collins (Left-back)
Had a very busy evening on his first game of AFCON 2019 and gave a good account of himself. Came up against two players several times but held his own.
Wilfred Ndidi (Defensive midfield)
Another strong performance from Ndidi who was in charge of closing the space to frustrate the Bafana Bafana in midfield. Didn’t press aggressively like in preview games-although they were moments he lost focus and did-rather, he closed down spaces as the Super Eagles zonal marked the South Africans.
Oghenekaro Etebo (Midfield)
Put in the shift in midfield and was instrumental in the Super Eagles game plan of sitting deep and then hitting the South Africans on a counter attack. His energy was vital as the Super Eagles closed down spaces instead of man-marking.
Alex Iwobi (Midfield)
Iwobi was better in the No 10 role and created a slew of chances for the Super Eagles. Used his quick feet to beat two defenders in the lead up to the assist for Nigeria’s first goal.
His distribution was also better, playing in the wingers to set up counter-attacking moves and was a threat himself anything he ran at the South African defence with the ball.
Ahmed Musa (Forward)
His pace and dribbling were very crucial to the Super Eagles on the counter-attack. Had South Africa’s right back Thamsanqa Mkhize for dinner and also defended well. He was, however, guilty of his atrocious cross and passes in the final third.
Samuel Chukwueze (Forward)
Back in the starting XI, Chukwueze showed Nigerians what he is truly made off. He was a threat all through the game with his dribbling and direct run. Did well to drift into the middle from where he made a run into to South Africa’s penalty area to score.
He was named Man of the Match for his performance.
Odion Ighalo (Striker)
As the Super Eagles focused on using the wings to attack the South Africans, Ighalo looked isolated most of the time. He had to drop deep to get involved in the game and missed out on some crosses inside the South Africa area.
Had a touch from the ball during a dead-ball situation that kept Zungu onside for Bafana Bafana’s goal.
Moses Simon (Forward)
Came on for Musa in the 81st minute but could not beat Mkhize in several attempts. He managed to get a corner which he took to set up Nigeria’s winner.
Leon Balogun (Defender)
Came on in the 90th minute to help the Super Eagles defend their one-goal lead.